Rick Edwards

Magazine Training in India

February 1, 2016

I just returned from spending a week in Kochi, India. I was invited to be a trainer in a magazine training event where we spent a week working with Christian magazine publishers from India, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Nigeria, and Kenya. (more…)

Austria In the Fall of 2015

January 1, 2016
Chris, Caroline, and Siegi 1

Chris and Siegi Irrasch and Caroline

Siegi and Chris Irrasch are very dear friends who live in Austria. I have known them since I was a teenager and consider them my family even though the link is distant. Caroline and I went to visit them in the Fall of 2015. Chris’s health has not been great so we wanted to make the trip while my health (and age) still allowed. These are two of my favorite people in the whole world and I’m grateful they’re a part of our lives! (more…)

To My Girls…

August 16, 2015

There are now three supremely important ladies in my life. I say “ladies” because the word reflects, to some degree, the point I hope to make in this article. I am still learning how to treat a woman, but I am learning… from experience and from my mistakes. I hope I will be a good man to these three women and demonstrate in my actions what I am saying with my words in this article. (more…)

Bio and Images

August 16, 2015

Rick Edwards is a ministry and publishing veteran of more than 40 years. He has served churches as senior pastor in Oklahoma and Tennessee. He attended Oklahoma Baptist University from 1974 to 1978 where he earned a BA in Religion. After that he attended Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Ft. Worth, Texas and graduated with an MDiv in 1981.

Rick pastored two churches as Senior Pastor in Claremore, Oklahoma and Okemah, Oklahoma. In 1990 Rick moved to Nashville, Tennessee where he began to serve as an editor of youth Sunday School curriculum for LifeWay Christian Resources. He eventually moved into management and became the Director of the Adult Sunday School Department until October of 2000.

He then went to work for Salem Media Group where he served as Associate Publisher over their publishing component until 2013. He is now self-employed and managing a business he owns with his wife, Caroline.

He and Caroline reside in Lebanon, Tennessee where they are members at Immanuel Baptist Church. He continues to teach and preach as opportunities arise.

Click on images below for a full-size version…

Rick Edwards2









Rick Cropped









Rick and Caroline-180 Cropped

Responding to Our Pagan Culture (Video)

August 5, 2015

I have enjoyed a wonderful and long relationship with Cross Roads Cowboy Church in Bon Aqua, Tennessee. It’s a great church with loving people and a sweet fellowship. I am invited to preach there several times a year and always come away feeling richly blessed. (more…)

The Slide Into Legalism and How to Avoid It (Audio)

August 3, 2015

This message was delivered at my home church, Immanuel Baptist Church in Lebanon, Tennessee, on July 21, 2010. It is based on Galatians 2 and addresses Peter’s slide into legalism as well as Paul’s resulting confrontation of Peter. I look at how any of us (more…)


July 29, 2015
Rick and Caroline-180 Cropped

On January 4, 2014, Caroline Victoria Gordon became Caroline Victoria Edwards. It was a good day and every day since seems to just get better.

We are still learning, like any couple, to navigate the challenges of life itself, but it’s hard for me to overstate just how perfect this woman is for me. It has taken me almost 59 years to learn how to lead in a marriage and I’m still learning, but this woman helps me learn and makes me a better man just by being my wife.

Zach, Alli, Sadie, and Heidi

July 29, 2015

Zach and AlliThere are many wonderful things I could say about my son, Zach Edwards. Perhaps most important is that he has a genuinely tender heart for the Lord and for people, especially those he perceives to be at some kind of disadvantage. I have admired his loyalty toward his friends and am proud of the natural way he connects with people. He has a gift in that way that I greatly envy. I believe Zach senses a calling on his life and I’m anxious to see how that finds expression in the years ahead. Zach loves his wife (Alli) and their little girls, Sadie Rose and Heidi Paige. We are enjoying watching them grow and watching Zach and Alli navigate the usual challenges that come with being young parents.

Sadie Rose

Heidi Paige

I Am A Prodigal

August 2, 2013

The parable of the Prodigal Son is a well-known and popular parable of Jesus for good reason. Most of us can identify with the wayward character in some way. My life course has followed that of the prodigal son in significant ways. I understand what it is to journey to a “far country,” squander the blessing of my Father, and then experience the forgiveness and renewed blessing of that same Father.

When I was in my early 40s, I became involved in an extra-marital affair that ultimately destroyed my family, significantly damaged my Christian witness, and, for many years, made it impossible for me to pursue God’s calling on my life. This affair began a prodigal season in my life during which I went through a string of very dishonorable relationships. During this time I walked away from my marriage, lost years of being in any kind of relationship with my son, and caused real and significant pain in the lives of many people. Prodigals never understand at the outset of their journey just how much pain they will cause in the lives of other people. Neither do they understand the important things they will lose and never get back. Time can be a relentless and often cruel enemy.

At some point along the way I realized I was living in the pig slop of life and determined I needed to return to my Father. I have found it interesting that the loving Father in the story of the Prodigal Son was not waiting at the edge of the pig pen. The point of decision in a prodigal’s life may be critical, but it is just the beginning. The journey home for the prodigal was not instantaneous. He first set his eyes homeward, then began placing one foot in front of the other. It took time. He certainly carried the stench of the slop with him which, no doubt, left a memorable impression on those he encountered along the way.

So in my own life the journey home was not instantaneous. It took years. As I journeyed, I carried the smell of my failures with me. There are many out there, perhaps reading this, who can testify to the stench of my life and the impact it had on them in those days. From a distance, the prodigal looked like most others. You couldn’t smell him or see just how tattered were the rags he was wearing. Only those who got close can tell just how impoverished I was.

I remember the day I heard the voice of my Father say, “Welcome home.” He knew I was coming. He was waiting.

My life is different now. I am married to a woman who understands my past and loves me in spite of it. At the same time she refuses to let me grow too comfortable in the grace I have received. The prodigal was home, but there were things to do for the Father. He had to leave the past firmly in the past while also learning from it so as not to repeat it. My wife encourages and enables me to do that.

I am home now. Certainly there are moments when I reflect on those days and grieve for the pain I caused. Those who encountered the prodigal on his journey home would not recognize him after a good shower and some new clothes. He may have been tempted, at times, to retrace his steps for the sake of apology, but prudence would have dictated that he stay close to home. I, too, would want to apologize to the many who may yet smell the lingering odor of having gotten too close to me. Please forgive me. I am genuinely sorry for the pain, but I dare not revisit those places that allured me. I am home and need to stay close to my Father. He has work for me to do.

For those who may be wondering, my confession and return to the Father has not been purely a private experience. The party for the returning prodigal was a very public event. In a similar way, my heavenly Father has pushed me to give public testimony to His grace. My departure was public, so has been (and continues to be) my return.

That is why I am placing this story on my web site for anyone to read. If you wish to know Rick Edwards, then you must know this story. I have many regrets, but this is not about my regrets as much as it is about His grace. He has welcomed me home in spite of my failures. Nonetheless, it is important to me that I give public affirmation to His love.

In addition to this article, I have been given the opportunity to tell my story to more than one church, including my home church. Below is a brief video clip in which I shared my failures with my own church family at Immanuel Baptist Church in Lebanon, Tennessee. This clip was excerpted from a sermon on the life of David called From Failure to Legacy. I delivered this message on Sunday morning, October 7, 2012. From Failure to Legacy can be viewed here in its entirety.

I am especially grateful now for the grace and support I receive from significant individuals in our church. As I update this post in August of 2022, I have a deepening relationship with several men with whom I meet weekly. It is not a “recovery” or accountability group. It’s better than that. We gather because we are friends, but the friendships do hold me accountable and keep me moving in the right direction. There are other men in my life who do the same. Lebanon, Tennessee has become my home and Immanuel Baptist is my church. I’m grateful for both.

Confession and Hope


From Failure to Legacy (Video)

August 2, 2013

On Sunday morning, October 7, 2012, I preached the following message at Immanuel Baptist Church in Lebanon, Tennessee. I am grateful for my former pastor, John Hunn, who allowed me the pulpit that day and has been criticized for it. He is a loving pastor who (more…)